This morning, I rode Jackson. We started by doing his neuro-muscular exercises over the poles. I walked him back and forth, changing the distances frequently, for about ten minutes. Then I tightened up his saddle and got on. We started with more walking and then some trot work. I'm trying to teach him to reach long and low in the warm up, and he's getting better, but we still have work to do there. Next, I worked on some transitions to get his hind end engaged. We would trot to a letter, walk two strides, and then immediately trot off again. It's making a huge difference in how he carries himself and also keeps him light off my leg. Next, we did some transitions within trot -- a big trot down the long side and a more compressed trot on the short side. We are still a long way from calling it collection. At this point, my goal is to make him loose and supple and able to move his body easily. We finished up with some canter work. Again, it was excellent. For the first time in months, I felt like I had my dressage horse back. My goal is to take a lesson on him in early November. To do that, he needs to stay sound while increasing his strength and fitness. I have all my fingers and toes crossed.
In the afternoon, I wandered around outside. It was another beautiful day with temperatures in the mid 70s. I picked an apple in the orchard and ate it as I walked down to the horse pasture. The horses were in a huddle, discussing something.
|Jackson: Hey Mom! Come on over and bring that apple core with you.|
|Flash: Ah - hem. I am the alpha horse here. And I want the core.|
|Flash: I understand that Jackson got most of it. He is her horse. But I get the rest. Beat it Kalvin!|
|Finessa enjoyed rolling while Tuffy stood guard.|
|Tuffy: I think there's a fly in my ear.|
|Aren't we cute? Don't you want to give us an apple core too? Me: Sorry, you're on a diet.|
When I left, Jackson followed me all the way to the pasture gate. I love having a horse who wants to be with me more than with his friends.
|Jackson: She thinks it's about love. It's really about apple cores.|
Eventually, I had to go back in the house and start dinner. I'm braising some lamb shanks in a sauce seasoned with ginger, cumin, coriander, cinnamon and saffron. There's apricots in the pot too.
I bought some crusty bread to go with it and I think I'll make an apple cobbler for dessert. It's Lori's fault -- she posted a picture of an apple Betty she made and I dreamt about it all last night.
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